Ps 46 – “See the marvels of GOD! He bans wars from pole to pole, breaks all weapons across his knee.”
The Psalmists were no strangers to violence. Their world regularly involved hostility and aggression. Barbaric invaders, psychotic despots, and blood-lusting neighbors have played a prominent role in Israel’s story ever since their slave-days in Egypt. We might imagine that the sole prayer of the Songwriter might be for protection, but he adds another dimension.
The God of Israel — the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ — is not a crazed deity looking for a scrap. Despite some of the judgments that He justly pronounces, the end-game — the Kingdom end-game — involves the banning of all war and the eradication of all weaponry.
Given the prominence and prevalence of violence all around us — from international wars to our home entertainment systems — that will be a marvel indeed!
We may long for the day when the lion will lie down with the lamb (and not eat it!) and spears will be turned into farming implements. We may look forward to that time when brutality is banished and all savagery is struck down. But as the Body of Christ, seeking to declare the Kingdom of God among us, this must be more than a hopeful prayer. We have a real role to play right now.
We cannot ban all wars or break all weapons that may be raised against us — that’s God’s prerogative in His own timing — but we can model a different way; the way of peace.
The season of Spring, which gives rise to our term Lent, is a season of life. How appropriate that on one of these 40 days we should pause, ponder again the violence in our world, pray again against it, and choose again to promote peace in every way we can.
Breath Prayer for Today: “May Your peace prevail.”